Tag Archives: Robbie Rist

Sharknado 5 is Coming!

Yes, the SyFy network has announced the release date for Sharknado 5. It appears the title will be Sharknado 5: Global Swarming. If you’ve never watched the Sharknado series of movies you’re missing out on a modern classic, tongue in cheek, campy, cheesy version of the disaster movie genre.

In 2013 the first Sharknado took the world by storm and it’s iconic, signature image was that of Fin Shephard (played by Ian Ziering) chainsawing his way out of a shark that had swallowed him and his chainsaw. The fact that a shark movie has a main character named Fin tells you this isn’t a movie that takes itself too seriously.

Here is the published synopsis of Sharknado 5: With much of North America lying in ruins, the rest of the world braces for the inevitable – a global sharknado. Fin Shepard and his family must put a stop to this disaster before Earth is completely obliterated. That just oozes with so much sharky goodness. I can’t wait.

Sugar Ray singer Mark McGrath and Ian Ziering

In addition to Tara Reid returning as Fin’s wife, part of the awesomeness of this movie series is the cavalcade of guest star cameo’s including Mark Cuban, Jerry Springer, Mark McGrath, Anne Coulter, Al Roker, Frankie Muniz, Vivica Fox, Gary Busey, Cheryl Tiegs, Steve Guttenberg, Carrot Top, and almost every pro wrestler, YouTube and reality TV star you can name. With #Sharknado5 going international you can bet that there will be an international cast of characters. Karl Stefanovic and Lisa Wilkonson of Australia’s The Today Show have already revealed that they have cameo’s in Sharknado 5 as have Good Morning Britain’s Charlotte Hawkins, Kate Garraway, and Laura Tobin. British Olympic swimmer Tom Daley is also appearing in Sharknado 5.

Also, I have a special affinity for the movie series because two years ago #Sharknado actor and theme song musician Robbie Rist was interviewed here on #ThePhilFactor. I can’t make any promises, but I’m going to try to land an interview with someone else from the movie. Consider yourself on notice and clear your calendar for the evening of August 6th! Stay tuned!

Have a great Sharkday Sunday! ~Phil

Carol Brady, Fidel Castro, and Me

Like two sides of a coin, good and evil, Florence Henderson, aka Carol Brady, and Fidel Castro, former Dictator of Cuba, both died yesterday. For those of you that haven’t had your morning coffee, Florence Henderson represented the good, All-American mom on the iconic 1970’s show The Brady Bunch. Fidel Castro was the Communist dictator who, with several of his supporters, including his brother Raul, now President, overthrew the Cuban government in 1959.

Good and evil, Yin and Yang, give and take, ebb and flow, Kanye and Bieber, the simultaneous passing of two icons who represented opposite ideals in the old world has a fitting kind of balance doesn’t it? There’s something that troubles me about this though. A disturbance in the  Force if you will.

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First, they always say that celebrity deaths happen in threes. That means that there’s one more sad, Earth shaking celebrity death to come. Who is it? What if it’s someone we like? What if it’s Justin Bieber? Or a Kardashian? Or Neil DeGrasse Tyson? Another death of that magnitude would rock the world’s pop culture to it’s core. Or worse yet, what if it’s (gasp) ME? (You are taken aback for a moment, thinking that I’m obviously delusional about the popularity of my blog and books) YOU? you think, or maybe even say aloud as you involuntarily spit out your coffee. (I of course am hoping that I’m worth a spit take)

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Yes, there are reasons why I might be the perfect third celebrity death. Well, maybe not perfect from my point of view. Sure, my celebrity status may be questionable at best, but I may be the one person on the planet who can be connected to both Florence Henderson and Fidel Castro. Yes, that’s right. If this were a crime, the police would interview me as a person of interest first. Intrigued? I would be. Here is how I’m connected to both these people:

Fidel Castro: My mother talked to his brother, current Cuban President Raul, on the phone once. That was back in the days before Tinder when people actually used telephones to talk. I’m pretty sure she swiped left. No, seriously, my mom did talk to Raul Castro once. In 1959 she was the secretary to a president of a company that had people working in Cuba when the Castro rebellion occurred. The companies workers in Cuba were taken hostage. Raul Castro called to speak to the company President to negotiate their release. My mom took the call. Had she swiped right and been flirty with the sexy Latin rebel, maybe Raul falls for her, abandons the rebellion and it collapses without him, he defects to the States to meet her and I’d have grown up with Daddy Raul in the Miami burbs and a democratic Cuba 90 miles to the south. The 1963 Cuban Missle Crisis would have been averted. It’s the little things in life that make a difference. Never underestimate your impact.

Florence Henderson: Last year I interviewed Brady Bunch cast member Robbie Rist for this blog.

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So there you have it. If someone else famous is going to die, it’s going to be me. While I’m not thrilled by the implications, I’m tempted to fake my own death just so I’ll go down in history remembered with Carol Brady and Fidel Castro. That’s an eclectic threesome isn’t it? And if this were my last blog post ever, imagine how viral this would go?

It could also go viral if you hit the Facebook or Twitter share button below just because you want to make my day. Maybe my last day. Who knows? Have a great weekend! ~Phil

 

Throwback Thursday! 6 Questions with Sharknado/TMNT/Brady Bunch Star Robbie Rist

This is maybe my favorite interview ever. We e-mailed back and forth for a week. He couldn’t have been nicer.

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For my readers who don’t know Robbie’s name off the top of your head, you no doubt have seen or heard him in something. Over the last forty years Robbie has been quietly woven into the fabric of American pop culture like few others. If you haven’t seen him in a movie or TV show, you’ve probably heard his voice as a cartoon character dating back to his work as Michelangelo for the 80’s cartoon and 1990 movie, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, or the Final Fantasy X video game or more recently as Stuffy for the Disney channel’s Doc McStuffins.  He’s also appeared in too many shows and movies for me to list here.  Even better though, he has an awesome rock band, The Ballzy Tommorow! What gave me the idea to contact him for the interview was when it occurred to me recently that he has been part of two of the most iconic pop culture phenomena of my lifetime, The Brady Bunch, and Sharknado.

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Phil: Robbie, welcome to The Phil Factor and thank you for taking a few minutes for my readers. When you got the part as the bus driver in Sharknado, what did you expect would be the public reaction to the movie?
Robbie: Well, I had heard about the poster for the movie from a friend who had gone to the American Film Market here in Santa Monica (The AFM is like a micro Cannes. People try to sell films there) and both of us being genre fans, we kinda lost our minds at the thought of it. I have said that the title of Sharknado says more in three syllables than A Trip To Bountiful does in 6. Then I found out my friend Anthony C. Ferrante was offered it. Anthony and I were working on music for another of his films when he told me he was offered it and I told him, “I don’t know why or how, but I really think you should do this movie. Something about it feels…….like something….”. So, I guess I thought the response would be pretty great, considering the way people reacted to the name. I wasn’t expecting Twitter to explode over it…..

sharknado

Phil: You obviously were absolutely right. The name caught my eye and ear and I decided, good or bad, I had to see it. Doing music for movie soundtracks isn’t your only musical outlet. Could you tell us about your band? What kind of music do you play? What has been your best gig?

Robbie: Well, we have gone through a name change after losing an original member (Pandora’s bassist/drummer Karen Basset) so now we call ourselves Ballzy Tomorrow! As far as style, I have pretty much been doing the same kind of pop/country/psych thing for decades. It’s that kind of power pop music no one likes but I get a kick out of it. Best gig ever was playing The Rally in The Alley in Buffalo NY in the 80s. It was, like 20,000 people. Played with Spirit. Fun day.

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Phil: Aww,  it’s too bad I didn’t know about it. At the time I lived about ninety miles east of Buffalo and could have come out to see your band. If Ballzy Tomorrow, The Mockers, or the band you produce every come out East, let me know. Robbie, You’ve had a very diverse career. What’s your favorite thing you’ve done?

Robbie: Tough to say. I just like to make stuff. I mean, I am super proud to have been a part of so many things that hit the zeitgeist super hard like The Brady Bunch and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. But I think I am most proud of Doc McStuffins. Apparently it is set to cause a spike ion the amount of young women (specifically African American young women) who go into studying the sciences, especially medicine. Considering that almost every cartoon on the planet, McStuffins included, is in existence to primarily sell toys, I would call this a solid fight from the inside victory.

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Phil: When Sharknado just blew up and became this huge thing, did anything changed for you?

Robbie: Well, not as far as my bank account goes, but some really great stuff happened like…..I had never had one of my songs re-mixed before.

Also, some young people did a vocalese version of the theme (which I couldn’t find). So, did I get more work out of it? Not really. But sometimes art is its own reward. Some people really reacted favorably to it.

Phil: The Brady Bunch and Cousin Oliver. How do you feel about people bringing that up constantly?

Robbie: Great! Hey. It’s on the resume. I respect the right of somebody to not want to be bothered but I don’t get that considering most people become performers to get attention.

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Phil: We know what you’ve done and what you’re doing. What’s coming up for you in television or movies? Where and when is your band playing next?

Robbie: The band is actually two bands. We do songs that we write but we also do a weekly half 70’s tribute band/ half live band karaoke thing at a restaurant out in Moorpark California called Red Ball’s Rock and Roll Pizza. Happens every Friday. It’s pretty out of control. The original band plays a once a month residency at Canter’s Kibitz Room in Los Angeles.

I just finished three songs for the Sharknado 3 soundtrack!

Phil: Yes, you heard him right folks, if you haven’t followed my Twitter or Instagram, there will be a Sharknado 3 this summer! So, besides creating awesome music for awesome movies, what else?

Robbie: I have also been doing some comedy writing and performing with an artist out here named Lisa Orkin. She has a website called HonestlyLisa.com that is a comedic relationship thing. Every week we do these little minute long audio bits based on her real dating life. She’s pretty much a genius.

I also have a (what we hope is) comedic talk podcast called The Spoon which can be found at www.thespoonradio.com.

I’m gonna be producing a band from Barcelona in a couple of months called Suzy & Los Quattro. This will be my third go around with them. I’m also gonna be on an acoustic tour of Spain in October with my friend Seth Gordon from The Mockers

(Hey folks, don’t worry, The Mockers and Suzy & Los Quattro will be my next two Music Monday features ~Phil)

Robbie: As far as the acting side, I just won the gig as Mondo Gecko in the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon. Doc McStuffins is going into its last year so…….I have no idea what is gonna come next. It seems to always be something…..I guess I can always go back to college…….

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Phil: Awesome! Congrats on the Mondo Gecko role and congrats on the continued success of all your music ventures. Thank you again for taking the time you did. In the future, anything you’re working on has a home on #ThePhilFactor. If you want to follow Robbie on social media you can find him on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. You can also support Robbie by downloading the Sharknado soundtrack.

Have a great Thursday! ~Phil

Music Monday! Sharknado!

This song, originally written by Friend of The Phil Factor (FOTPF), Robbie Rist, and remixed by Mike Relm, is your reminder that Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No is on this Wednesday night at 9 pm EST on the SyFy network. It’s a movie so bad it’s good, and it’s as American as apple pie!

Unfortunately I won’t be able to watch Sharknado 3 live because I’ll be at the Alternative Press Music Awards in Cleveland where I’ll be Periscoping live.What’s Periscope? It’s an app that let’s you stream live video to the world wide web in real time from your phone. If you follow me on Twitter you can follow me on Periscope. Even if you don’t want to broadcast yourself, you can watch others.

Have a great Monday! ~Phil

Music Monday! The Mockers

As a continuation of my Friday interview with actor/producer/musician Robbie Rist, here’s an absolutely hilarious song by the band, The Mockers, that Robbie is in with his friends Seth Gordon and Tony Leventhal. Give it a listen, it’s really funny.

Have a great Monday! ~Phil

6 Questions with Brady Bunch/TMNT/Sharknado star Robbie Rist!

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For my readers who don’t know Robbie’s name off the top of your head, you no doubt have seen or heard him in something. Over the last forty years Robbie has been quietly woven into the fabric of American pop culture like few others. If you haven’t seen him in a movie or TV show, you’ve probably heard his voice as a cartoon character dating back to his work as Michelangelo for the 80’s cartoon and 1990 movie, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, or the Final Fantasy X video game or more recently as Stuffy for the Disney channel’s Doc McStuffins.  He’s also appeared in too many shows and movies for me to list here.  Even better though, he has an awesome rock band, The Ballzy Tommorow! What gave me the idea to contact him for the interview was when it occurred to me recently that he has been part of two of the most iconic pop culture phenomena of my lifetime, The Brady Bunch, and Sharknado.

IMG_8347-800x5331-419x279

Phil: Robbie, welcome to The Phil Factor and thank you for taking a few minutes for my readers. When you got the part as the bus driver in Sharknado, what did you expect would be the public reaction to the movie?
Robbie: Well, I had heard about the poster for the movie from a friend who had gone to the American Film Market here in Santa Monica (The AFM is like a micro Cannes. People try to sell films there) and both of us being genre fans, we kinda lost our minds at the thought of it. I have said that the title of Sharknado says more in three syllables than A Trip To Bountiful does in 6. Then I found out my friend Anthony C. Ferrante was offered it. Anthony and I were working on music for another of his films when he told me he was offered it and I told him, “I don’t know why or how, but I really think you should do this movie. Something about it feels…….like something….”. So, I guess I thought the response would be pretty great, considering the way people reacted to the name. I wasn’t expecting Twitter to explode over it…..

sharknado

Phil: You obviously were absolutely right. The name caught my eye and ear and I decided, good or bad, I had to see it. Doing music for movie soundtracks isn’t your only musical outlet. Could you tell us about your band? What kind of music do you play? What has been your best gig?

Robbie: Well, we have gone through a name change after losing an original member (Pandora’s bassist/drummer Karen Basset) so now we call ourselves Ballzy Tomorrow! As far as style, I have pretty much been doing the same kind of pop/country/psych thing for decades. It’s that kind of power pop music no one likes but I get a kick out of it. Best gig ever was playing The Rally in The Alley in Buffalo NY in the 80s. It was, like 20,000 people. Played with Spirit. Fun day.

images (36)
Phil: Aww,  it’s too bad I didn’t know about it. At the time I lived about ninety miles east of Buffalo and could have come out to see your band. If Ballzy Tomorrow, The Mockers, or the band you produce every come out East, let me know. Robbie, You’ve had a very diverse career. What’s your favorite thing you’ve done?

Robbie: Tough to say. I just like to make stuff. I mean, I am super proud to have been a part of so many things that hit the zeitgeist super hard like The Brady Bunch and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. But I think I am most proud of Doc McStuffins. Apparently it is set to cause a spike ion the amount of young women (specifically African American young women) who go into studying the sciences, especially medicine. Considering that almost every cartoon on the planet, McStuffins included, is in existence to primarily sell toys, I would call this a solid fight from the inside victory.

Doc-McStuffins_320x240

Phil: When Sharknado just blew up and became this huge thing, did anything changed for you?

Robbie: Well, not as far as my bank account goes, but some really great stuff happened like…..I had never had one of my songs re-mixed before.

Also, some young people did a vocalese version of the theme (which I couldn’t find). So, did I get more work out of it? Not really. But sometimes art is its own reward. Some people really reacted favorably to it.

Phil: The Brady Bunch and Cousin Oliver. How do you feel about people bringing that up constantly?

Robbie: Great! Hey. It’s on the resume. I respect the right of somebody to not want to be bothered but I don’t get that considering most people become performers to get attention.

Robbierist

Phil: We know what you’ve done and what you’re doing. What’s coming up for you in television or movies? Where and when is your band playing next?

Robbie: The band is actually two bands. We do songs that we write but we also do a weekly half 70’s tribute band/ half live band karaoke thing at a restaurant out in Moorpark California called Red Ball’s Rock and Roll Pizza. Happens every Friday. It’s pretty out of control. The original band plays a once a month residency at Canter’s Kibitz Room in Los Angeles.

I just finished three songs for the Sharknado 3 soundtrack!

Phil: Yes, you heard him right folks, if you haven’t followed my Twitter or Instagram, there will be a Sharknado 3 this summer! So, besides creating awesome music for awesome movies, what else?

Robbie: I have also been doing some comedy writing and performing with an artist out here named Lisa Orkin. She has a website called HonestlyLisa.com that is a comedic relationship thing. Every week we do these little minute long audio bits based on her real dating life. She’s pretty much a genius.

I also have a (what we hope is) comedic talk podcast called The Spoon which can be found at www.thespoonradio.com.

I’m gonna be producing a band from Barcelona in a couple of months called Suzy & Los Quattro. This will be my third go around with them. I’m also gonna be on an acoustic tour of Spain in October with my friend Seth Gordon from The Mockers

(Hey folks, don’t worry, The Mockers and Suzy & Los Quattro will be my next two Music Monday features ~Phil)

Robbie: As far as the acting side, I just won the gig as Mondo Gecko in the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon. Doc McStuffins is going into its last year so…….I have no idea what is gonna come next. It seems to always be something…..I guess I can always go back to college…….

wpid-20150625_205040.jpg

Phil: Awesome! Congrats on the Mondo Gecko role and congrats on the continued success of all your music ventures. Thank you again for taking the time you did. In the future, anything you’re working on has a home on #ThePhilFactor. If you want to follow Robbie on social media you can find him on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. Also you can support Robbie by watching Sharknado 3 on  Wed. July 22 on the SyFy network and by downloading the Sharknado soundtrack.